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Measuring Sustainable Development Goals: A Social-Ecological Perspective
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Stockholm Resilience Centre.
2017 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 40 credits / 60 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The 2030 Agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals provide benchmarks for global sustainable development. However, there may be trade-offs between goals if they are not treated as interlinked components of a larger system. The achievement of these goals then relies on countries’ ability to monitor and measure them consistently and interdependently. This study compares seven measures of development and welfare that goes beyond Gross Domestic Product in relation to the Sustainable Development Goals. The aim of this study is to clarify which measures are suitable for monitoring the Sustainable Development Goals. This is done by assessing measure indicators similarities with the indicators suggested by the United Nations for each goal. The study utilises a social-ecological framework emphasising the three dimensions of sustainability: the economy, the society and the biosphere. The result of this study indicates that measures, such as the Social Progress Index and Sustainable Society Index are the most suitable for measuring the Sustainable Development Goals. However, none of the chosen measures exhibit similarities with all the goals. The goals belonging to the society are most covered, whereas goals belonging to the economy and biosphere being least covered. This study suggests three possibilities for these results: First, measures that goes beyond Gross Domestic Product view the progress of human prosperity from the dimension of society. Secondly, measures are shaped and shape development issues where knowledge and trends lead to bases of frameworks and indicators used, where certain topics, such as sanitation, is overrepresented and infrastructure and technology underrepresented. Finally, measures inclusion of the biosphere is based on human needs and direct interaction with ecosystems and not the condition of ecosystem per se. This study propose that measures need to be complemented from a social-ecological system perspective, to be useful for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017.
Keyword [en]
Sustainable Development Goals, SDGs, Sustainability
National Category
Other Social Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-145387OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-145387DiVA, id: diva2:1128840
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Examiners
Available from: 2018-03-03 Created: 2017-07-29 Last updated: 2018-03-03Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
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  • asciidoc
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